I have noticed a decrease in insults! It took a few detention sessions for three or four students, but I am slowly seeing a change. The kids called a foul on me a couple of times. This is why: One student called another a name. Before I could process the insult and react, the offended student shot an insult back, so they BOTH had detention. After-school detention gave us a few minutes to chat. I asked that the guys give me time to process before automatically shooting a remark back to the offending student. That way, at least one of them would be in the right. They agreed to try it my way, and it’s been a quiet week—yes, I know it’s only Tuesday! As you can tell, it’s the small things that make me the happiest.
UPDATE! The insults have slowed dramatically. I conclude that the students are getting the point. We have been able to play more games and have a little fun. Whew! I sure feel better.